Ettaler Benediktiner Weizen

Val and I went to a German restaurant in New York City and I was looking for a German beer that I hadn’t reviewed before, so I settled on this.

ABV: 5.4%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Wheat beers have a tremendous variety of flavors. Maybe that’s why they are so popular because they show what you can brew from just 4 raw materials. The Benedictine wheat beer is brewed in peace. The original Ettaler cellar yeast produces from the naturally cloudy, amber-colored beer a pleasant fruity aroma of banana and some raisin. Since the Benedictine wheat beer was so popular that the local brewing capacities in Ettal were no longer sufficient, we decided in 2011 to brew the beer with our cooperation partner in the traditional Licher private brewery Jhring Melchior under our supervision and according to our original recipe to let. At which of the two locations the beer is also brewed; Original recipe, the exclusive use of Ettaler cellar yeast and the monastic supervision of the brewing process ensure the unmistakable taste of Benedictine wheat beer.”

Random: Google translate is the best.

The beer poured with a quarter finger of white head. It dissipated slowly, but didn’t leave much lacing on the glass. The body was hazy and a bright orange color with lots of carbonation visible. The nose had all the notes that I’ve come to expect from the style. It had banana, wheat, clove, bubblegum and yeast. There was some coriander and apple as well. The taste was also that of a typical hefeweizen. It started with tons of wheat and banana. Bubblegum notes were there, but subdued. It didn’t have as much spice as I would have liked, but still had some clove and coriander. Green apple came through next. Pear notes finished up the sip. The body was medium thickness with lots of carbonation. It had a quick finish with banana. I liked this beer and it paired well with German food, but it wasn’t my favorite of the style.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Samuel Adams Hefeweizen

It’s been awhile since I had a Sam Adams beer, so let’s see how it was.

ABV: 5.4%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “FRESHEST BEER PROGRAM In 2010, we started collaborating with our distributors through a program dubbed the ‘Freshest Beer Program,’ which improves efficiency in the supply chain and deliver drinkers the freshest Samuel Adams beer possible. Doesn’t sound all that exciting but trust us – it’s an innovative idea. HOW IT WORKS Distributors typically keep about a month of beer inventory, often kept warm in their warehouse. The Freshest Beer Program reduces that to a week or two and requires keeping our beer cold. Almost 80% of our volume is on the Freshest Beer Program, making it possible for people across the country to enjoy a fresh Sam Adams beer that came off the bottling line just a week or two ago. WHEN IT STOPS BEING FRESH, WE BUY IT BACK Sam Adams employees are constantly, almost obsessively, checking our beers to ensure that they’re fresh. When a Samuel Adams beer is past its freshness date, no matter where it is found, or who finds it, we take it off the shelf and send it to a beer recycling facility (yes, they do exist).”

Random: I used to get all of the Sam’s mixed packs, but there are so many better options now that I don’t see the point.

The beer poured with a two and a half finger, slightly off white head, which was very thick. It took awhile to dissipate and left a lot of lacing on the glass. The body was moderately hazy and bright orange with lots of visible carbonation. The nose was filled with all of the scents of a typical hefeweizen: banana, bubble gum and clove, along with some wheat. The taste was very muted compared to the nose. There was still bubble gum, banana, clove and a touch of nutmeg. There was some wheat and citrus, but overall, it tasted like a lightly flavored seltzer. The body was light with a lot of carbonation. It had a quick and unremarkable finish. This was part of a mixed pack that hung out in the back of the fridge, so I have no idea the cost of this, but even if it was cheap, this beer was a miss for me.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

Jailbreak Feed The Monkey

Tonight’s selection is a beer that I picked up during our last trip to DC. I always look forward to going to DC because the food down there is awesome. We went to brunch last time at Izakaya and it was really good. Food is served tapas style, so you can get a bunch of different things and try them. My favorite thing was the grilled avocado with ponzu sauce. I could have eaten about 10 of those and they probably would have gone well with this beer.

ABV: 5.6%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “A german style hefeweizen that combines traditional notes of clove and banana with subtle citrus aromas and flavors to provide balance and complexity. With this hefeweizen, there’s no fruit required — we’ve got that covered.”

Random: This beer comes in at 14 IBUs.

The beer poured with a generous three finger, pure white head. It took a long time to dissipate and left significant lacing on the glass. The body was mildly cloudy and bright yellow with some carbonation visible. The nose was mild for the style. It started with banana and some grain and had a note of white grapes as well. The taste was like a normal hefeweizen with banana and bubble gum. It had a touch of Mandarin orange segments, but also some green apple and white grapes. The beer had moderate carbonation and was a decent thickness. The finish was lengthy with the banana and white grape. This beer was $1.83 a can, which came to $.15 per ounce. I thought this was a good example of a domestic hefeweizen and would have it again for sure.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0

Night Shift Furth

Night Shift is getting increased distribution in this area. I picked up a four pack of these cans in Philly and was ridiculously excited to see it without making a drive up north. I first got to give their beers a shot when my parents brought some home for me from an antiquing trip in Massachusetts. They had no idea what they were bringing home for me, but they have fared pretty well in the blog.


ABV: 5.5%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to the brewery website, “Named after a Bavarian city, this globally enjoyable hefeweizen sips with soft, fruity notes of banana, wheat, clove, and orange rind.”

Random: We just started watching the movie version of “Into The Woods” and Christine Baranski is in it. This makes me happy.

The beer poured with a half a finger of pure white head. It dissipated slowly and left no lacing on the glass. The body was shockingly clear for the style and straw yellow in color. It had a lot of carbonation visible. The nose had a lot of bubble gum and banana. Wheat came through as well. The taste started with banana and bubble gum, but had a slightly metallic taste that was unpleasant. There was some mild clove spice as well. The body was thick for the style with high carbonation. It had a quick finish with clove and bubble gum. I don’t remember how much I paid for this one, but I did like that it came in sixteen ounce pounder cans. This wasn’t a bad beer by any means, just not the best one that I’ve ever had. I don’t feel the need to revisit it.

Untappd Rating: 3.0/5.0

SoMe Denthead Hefeweizen

This is the last of the SoMe beers that I brought home. I had this one at the brewery, although I don’t remember much about it.


ABV: 6.5%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to, “Weißbiers feature fermentation by-products such as esters (which lend fruity flavors and aromas), especially isoamyl acetate, reminiscent of bananas, and the phenolic compound guaiacol, a metabolite of ferulic acid, which smells and tastes like cloves. Other phenolics sometimes found in Weißbiers evoke medicinal or smoky sensations. The bittering level of most Weißbiers is close to 15 International Bitterness Units, a very low level. Hop flavor and aroma are typically low. The ester and phenolic aspects are produced by the special type of yeast, rather than the high fraction of wheat in the grain bill. The carbonation level can range from 5.5 grams per liter (approximately 2.7 volumes; slightly higher than that of most other German beers) to 7 grams per liter, or more. This produces a generous stand of foam, especially in light of the high protein content of wheat malt.”

Random: On one of my beer podcasts, one of the speakers talked about her brother catching a 400 pound alligator. That does not seem like fun to me.

This beer poured with a one finger, white head that dissipated quickly. It left no lacing on the glass. The body was a cloudy, light yellow with moderate carbonation. The nose was had yeast, banana and wheat. The spice on the nose was limited. The taste had banana, bubblegum and wheat. Orange came through as well. It had significant sweetness to it and the spice only came through at the end with slight coriander. The body was on the thinner side with high carbonation. It had a quick finish with wheat, orange and bubblegum. A bomber of this was $7.99 which came to $.36 per ounce. This was a nice beer, but nothing outstanding. I wouldn’t rush back to have it again.

Untappd Rating: 3.5/5.0

Widmer Hefe Shandy

Val picked out this beer awhile back. It is a summer seasonal from Widmer, which I don’t see around all that much. I know that it seems like I waited way too long to drink this, keep in mind that I schedule my posts awhile in advance, although I don’t think drinking this fresh would have helped it much.


ABV: 4.2%

Style: Hefeweizen


Random: I really like the mug they have on their website. Generally speaking, their merchandise is attractive, although I’m not sure as to the validity of their claim as “Oregon’s favorite craft beer.”

This beer poured with less than a half a finger of white head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing. The body was a cloudy, bright yellow with no visible carbonation but lots of visible floaties. The nose had an odd lemon note that was like artificial lemon syrup. There wasn’t much wheat. The taste was like lemons that had gone rancid. It reminded me of old lemonade and I couldn’t stomach more than one or two sips. The body was light with high carbonation. The finish was quick with the same awful lemon taste. A bottle of this was $1.49 at Half Time in New York, which came to $.12 per ounce. This is one of the worst beers that I’ve had in recent memory.

Untappd Rating: 0.5/5.0

Julius Echter Hefe-Weissbier Hell

The next beer that I had when we were in Philly was at Bru. After our massages at Lush, we decided to try a new place for a late lunch (especially since I was starving). The place was empty, but we still made reservations to get our Open Table points. It was incredibly dark in the place, but they had an impressive draft list which included a self-serve tap wall with local favorites (Victory, Troegs, etc.). I was especially in the mood for a hefeweizen, so I ordered this one.


ABV: 5.3%

Style: Hefeweizen

Trivia: According to, “Julius Echter von Mespelbrunn was a Prince-Bishop of Wurzburg, Echter was born in Mespelbrunn Castle, Spessart (Lower Franconia) and died in Wurzburg. Wurzburger Hofrau makes a wheat beer called ‘Julius Echter Hefe-Weissbier’ in honor of the bishop.”

Random: Hefeweizens are a go-to beer for me in the summer.

This beer poured with a two finger, thick white head that was slow to dissipate. It left a lot of lacing on the glass. The body was a cloudy, bright orange with no visible carbonation due to the cloudiness of the beer. The nose was really bright with orange and coriander spice. Some wheat was there as well. The taste was equally bright with orange, yeast and spice. It had a medium body with high carbonation. The finish was lengthy with fresh oranges. There wasn’t much complexity to this one, which I was fine with because I specifically wanted this beer to pair with the German fare that we got. I would have this again, it was a solid beer.

Untappd Rating: 4.0/5.0